business news in context, analysis with attitude

Content Guy’s Note: Stories in this section are, in my estimation, important and relevant to business. However, they are relegated to this slot because some MNB readers have made clear that they prefer a politics-free MNB; I can't do that because sometimes the news calls out for coverage and commentary, but at least I can make it easy for folks to skip it if they so desire.

From the New York Times this morning:

"More than 300 businesses, including Google, McDonalds, and Walmart, are pushing the Biden administration to nearly double the United States’ target for cuts to planet-warming emissions before an April 22 global summit on climate change.

"In a letter to President Biden, CEOs from some of the nation’s largest companies called on the administration to set a new Paris Agreement goal of slashing the nation’s carbon dioxide, methane, and other planet-warming emissions at least 50 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.

"That is roughly what most major environmental groups want, and the corporate executives called the target 'ambitious and attainable'."

The Times writes that "the corporate response is all the more remarkable because Biden’s plan for curbing climate change would be paid for in large part by raising corporate tax rates, a move sure to raise objections among at least some of the climate-conscious corporations. He also has called for a clean electricity standard and promised new regulations on the utility sector, automobile makers and oil and gas industries."

Which is interesting, since the Washington Post reports that "the nation’s top business leaders are pushing back against President Biden’s plans to raise corporate taxes to pay for his infrastructure plan … the Business Roundtable, a lobbying group that represents the chief executives of more than 220 large companies, plans to launch a digital and radio ad campaign against Biden’s proposal to raise the corporate tax rate from 21 to 28 percent."  The organization "published a survey showing that 75 percent of the 178 members queried said a tax hike would negatively affect their investments in research and development."

The Post writes that what we are seeing is "something of split screen for those observing America’s largest corporations, which are being pulled off the sidelines and into the social and political melee as employees and the public demand it."  Corporate America, the story says, continues to wade " into a growing number of hot-button policies that put it at odds, by turns, with lawmakers and stakeholders, and test the development of its public voice."